WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is pushing back against those questioning whether he has the authority to order American companies to cut trade ties with China.
Trump on Friday morning tweeted that he "hereby ordered" U.S. companies to seek alternatives to doing business in China. The White House did not cite what authority the president could use to force private businesses to change their practices.
But at midnight, as he was flying to France, the president tweeted again, saying that those who "don't have a clue" about presidential powers should look at the Emergency Economic Powers Act of 1977. He added, "Case closed!"
The law says the president is authorized "to regulate international commerce after declaring a national emergency" if there is an "extraordinary threat" to the nation.
The Consumer Technology Association, a trade group that runs the annual Consumer Electronics Show, says "enough is enough" when it comes to escalating tariffs in the U.S. trade war with China.
The CTA said in a statement Friday that President Donald Trump's tariffs are the worst economic mistake since the 1930 Smoot-Hawley Act raised tariffs just as the world was sliding into the Great Depression.
The group says it is clear that tariffs are not moving the U.S. toward a deal with China, and that it is time to end the trade war and come to an agreement.
The CTA represents more than 2,200 companies in the technology industry.
President Donald Trump says products coming from China that were slated to be hit with a 10% tariff on Sept. 1 will now face a 15% tariff.
Trump also says goods and products currently being taxed at 25% will be taxed at 30% starting Oct. 1.
Trump's comments come after China said it would pursue new tariffs of 5% and 10% on $75 billion of U.S. products.
The tariffs would take place in two steps, just as the U.S. said it would do earlier this month in imposing 10% tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese goods.
The rising tensions between the world's two biggest economies unnerved investors already on edge Friday.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 623 points Friday as companies and business groups urged the two countries to get to the negotiating table.